The Narnala fort is a historic Rajput fortress in Maharashtra. It is situated 73. 9 kms away from the town of Akola.
The Narnala fort is also called Shahnur Fort. It is a hill fortress. The fort is believed to be built during the 10th century AD and the 15th century. The fort was named after the Rajput king, Narnala Singh. The fort was established throughout the 10th century AD by the Gond kings. In the 15th century AD, the fort was occupied by the Mughals and then they rebuilt the fortress. During the Mughal era, the fort was one of the thirteen sarkars of Berar shah. The fort consists of three small forts, that is; Zafarbad fort on the eastern side, Narnala in the center and Teliagarh in the western side. There is a lake in the center of the property. According to legends, the lake has healing properties because it is believed that the Philosopher's stone is in the lake. Though no stone was found when the lake dried up during the drought of 1899-1900. It is believed to be the birthplace of the great grandson of the Mughal ruler Aurangazeb. The fort was almost always occupied by the rulers, this became common from the Khalji dynasty and as a result, the fort is famous for the muslim saint Hazrath Burhanuddin and is said that many white tigers were seen with him during his time. The fort was one of the important places of ammunition and war during many dynasties ranging from Gond dynasty to the Mughals.
The Naranala fort is located on a hilltop in the Akola district. The hill is special as it is the southern most tip of the Satpura range of mountains. The fort is situated at an elevation of 912 meters above sea level. Currently, the fort comes under the area of the Melghat Tiger Reserve. It is believed that the fort was built by the Sulthan Mahmoud Gaznavi and after him the Mughal ruler Akbar invaded Berar and was then maintained by the Mughals. They recreated the fort with Mughal architecture and built mosque at the fort. The fort is a beautiful and picturesque view from the valley and from far. The place is built in such a way that it overlooks the town. The fort offers a great view of the valley being so much above sea level makes the climate comparatively cool and windy. The visitors can experience the age old architecture and get immersed in the history of the place. many of the building are in good shape and is well maintained. To reach the fort one needs to trek up the hill, the vehicles cannot go up there. There are steps leading to the place in most areas.
The place is perfect for those history buffs and those who are interested in architecture. The place orates a story of its own. The visitors can spend a day amidst history in this place. Its perfect to go with family and friends. The fort can be visited during timings 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM. The fort is open throughout the year.